Fermentation is a major step in the process of making beer, wine and alcohol. While that’s all fun stuff, the drinks you order at the bar aren’t the only fermented beverages out there. So we’ve rounded up our favorite fermented drinks – alcoholic and not – and some of these you can even make at home.
Kombucha is a sweetened tea fermented with bacteria and yeast. In the grocery store, you’ll often find flavors that have been mixed with fruit too. This tasty beverage can aid digestion, help with detoxification, and boost the immune system. Either way, we think it tastes great! In the grocery store, these elixirs can be expensive so why don’t you brew your own?
Kefir is most often compared to yogurt as both are cultured milk products. The taste of kefir though is more tart than most yogurts and it has a thinner consistency. Like yogurt, it’s a probiotic with many digestive benefits. You can find plain or flavored kefir in your local grocery store or you could try your hand at making your own.
Water kefir grains and sugar water are mixed together to make kefir water – a deliciously fizzy drink that’s a great alternative to soda. Making kefir water at home is a simple process and many health food stores sell water kefir grains. Or check out Cultures for Health, which sells the grains online and will ship them right to your doorstep.
Kvass is a fermented beverage made from black or rye bread that originates from Russia. It tastes somewhat like a sweet non-alcoholic beer. It may be hard to find in stores, so take up the challenge to make your own by following the recipe here.
Hard Apple Cider
This actually couldn’t be easier to make at home. Just find yourself some fresh apple cider (or juice your own), cover with a cheesecloth and wait. Then savor the delicious, rich flavors created from all that “hard” work.
If you were looking for an excuse to try fermenting juices in your kitchen, we’ve found you a delicious reason. This Bloody Mary cocktail is made with fermented tomato juice which brings out the rich flavors of the fruit and introduces probiotics to an otherwise indulgent brunch favorite. Try it out here.
Ginger beer is delicious on it’s own and even better when mixed into a Dark and Stormy, the rum-based cocktail. Check out this mixologist’s recipe to make your own.